Sep 22 2017

A place for Jesus

As we walk out our daily life, I find it incredibly important to make sure no person, no thing, and no activity ever takes the place of Jesus. It’s easy to let life get so busy that we forget about being intentional with, what should be, the most important relationship in our lives. And it’s easy to let other people or stuff fall into the slot that Jesus should be occupying. I recently heard someone share a story about how they discerned a young lady was emotionally distressed after a bad breakup with her boyfriend. He looked her in the eyes and told her that the reason it hit her so hard is because her boyfriend took the place of Jesus in her life. And now that space was empty again. We can’t afford to let anything else take that place. When we do, it can throw everything else off balance. Whether that space is filled by other people, activities, work, etc., if it isn’t Jesus, we will never find true fulfillment. Everything we do in life has to flow from a place of intimacy with Jesus. When we keep him first, we hear from him more clearly, and are able to minister more effectively in everyday life. So, I intentionally make sure I have time set aside every day for just me and Jesus. Usually that takes place early in the morning, and then again at several points throughout the day. By keeping him first, I will always be ready to represent him in any situation or environment. There is a proper place for everything, let’s keep Jesus in the number one slot.

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Sep 15 2017

Impartation vs. Intimacy

I love the idea of impartation. I love the idea that I can receive something from God through the prayer of someone who carries what I need. We see this idea pop up in a few different places in the Bible. In 1 Timothy 4:14 and 2 Timothy 1:6, Paul references the gifts Timothy had as a result of being prayed for by Paul and the elders. In Romans 1:11, he tells the believers in Rome that he longs to come to them to impart a spiritual gift. And if we jump back to the Old Testament we see a similar concept in the life of Moses. In Numbers 11, we see that Moses was overwhelmed with the task of leading the Israelites, so the Lord had him gather 70 leaders from among the group to help him. And God told Moses that he would put on those leaders the same spirit that he had put on Moses. In verse 17 it says that God took from the Spirit that was on Moses and put it on these leaders. These leaders received what Moses had through impartation, and Timothy received what Paul had through impartation. I have prayed a prayer of impartation over people and watched the sick get healed through their hands just a few minutes later. Impartation is a powerful way to release people into something new. But impartation will only get you so far. I like to think of impartation as the lighting of a fire in someone’s life that gives them a taste of their true identity and starts them down a path of greater intimacy with God. The impartation gives you a quick shot in the arm, but the intimacy keeps the fire going and causes it to grow into a blazing bon fire that can’t be extinguished. We need impartation, but we need intimacy even more. I have ben prayed for by some of the great leaders of our faith and I have definitely received an impartation of what they carry. And it made me hungrier for more of God. It made me realize even more that I can do nothing without Him. And so, I go back to that place of intimacy and spend more time laying before his throne, pursuing his presence, and pouring out my heart to the one who has given everything for me. It’s in this place of intimacy where we receive even greater measures of what the world needs. And it’s from this place of intimacy that the world is changed. Impartation will get you started, but intimacy will get you to the finish line.

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Sep 1 2017

The greatest sacrifice

We had the privilege this past weekend of spending 3 days with a group comprised of people who escaped from North Korea, South Korean’s who have a heart for North Korea, and a revolutionary missionary who is called to minister to those who have escaped from North Korea. Their stories were captivating, challenging, and heart wrenching as we learned about their experiences. During one of the services, the speaker made this statement, “The greatest thing we can do is die for Jesus.” After hearing this, the room was mostly silent with very few amens or verbal agreement. That phrase shook the theology of those present because it is not something we think about in American Christian culture. We live in a society that doesn’t have to take life or death risks with our faith. The worst we really experience is someone calling us names on social media. Seventeen former members of this team have been captured in China, sent back to North Korea, and executed. When your life is literally on the line every day that you minister, it quickly changes your perspective. Philippians 1:21 says “to live is Christ and to die is gain.” The greatest sacrifice we can ever make for our faith is to give our lives for the cause of Christ. I once heard Will Hart tell a story about facing death when he was in the Congo, he told the soldiers who were pointing guns at him, “you can’t kill me, I’m already dead!” It’s this level of faith in Jesus that laughs at the possibility of death because we know our lives have already been given fully into His hands. Take a minute to pray for North Korea today, and for this team that is so passionate about bringing freedom to others, that they will give their lives for the cause.

We have posted their ministry video on our Facebook page that shares the story of their work and the challenges they have encountered. Go here now to watch it.

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